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Olanrewaju Durodola vs. Dmitry Kudryashov II on May 20


By Jim Dower: WBC Silver cruiserweight champion Dmitry Kudryashov (20-1-0, 20 КО) will be looking to avenge his past loss to #5 WBC, #6 WBO Olanrewaju Durodola (24-3-0, 22 КО) in a World Boxing Council cruiserweight eliminator bout on May 20 when the two of them face each other in a rematch in Rostov-on-Don, Russia.

The winner of the Durodola vs. Kudryashov fight will face the winner of this Saturday’s fight between Marco Huck and Mairis Briedis for the WBC cruiserweight title. Briedis already knocked out Durodola in the 9th round last year in May 2016. Briedis did a much better job dealing with Durodola’s huge punching power compared to Kudryashov. It was like night and day.

The hard hitting 31-year-old Kudryashov was stopped in 2 rounds by the 36-year-old Durodola on November 4, 2015 in a big upset in Kazan, Russia. The fight took place in front of Kudryashov’s own Russian boxing fans. Kudryashov tried to punch with Durodola right off the bat in that fight, and he underestimated his speed, power and combination punching of his opponent. Kudryashov came close to knocking Durodola down twice in the 1st round with big power shots. Kudryashov was too patient with Durodola and he left him off the hook.

Kudryashov’s face was bruised and red at the end of round 1. You could see that he was going to have problems if he didn’t jump on Durodola immediately to try and get him out of there.

Kudryashov made the mistake of backing up against the ropes at the start of the 2nd round. Durodola was then able to open up with a nonstop flurry of shots that ended with referee Jay Nady stepping in to stop the fight. Kudryashov never attempted to get off the ropes or even clinch Durodola to buy time to recover from being hurt. Kudryashov took a lot of a punishment in that fight, even though he never went down. If the referee hadn’t stopped the fight, Kudryashov would likely gone down because there was still too much time left in the round, and Durodola was hitting him at will with head shots.

Since that loss, Kudryashov has won his last two fights beating Julio Cesar Dos Santos and Santander Silgado by early knockouts. Those guys didn’t possess the same combination punching ability that Durodola has going for him. Kudryashov does well against guys that are more methodical and slow with their attacks. Durodola was unloading on Kudryashov the entire time and forcing him to fight at a faster pace than he was capable of performing at.

For his part, Durodola has won his last three fights beating Mussa Ajibu, Pascal Ndomba and Yuberti Suarez Diaz. Those were weak opposition for Durodola, and he had little problems knocking them all out.

As good a puncher as Kudryashov is, he’s still going to have a lot of problems with Durodola if he doesn’t fix his defense, and figure out how to increase his slow work rate. Durodola fights at a fast pace in all of his bouts, and he’s not going to slow things down so that Kudryashov keep up with him.

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